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Camp Esperanza, a state-sanctioned camp in Southeast Austin, will expand under the county's new iniative. (Jordan Vonderhaar)

The Travis County Commissioners Court voted unanimously Tuesday afternoon to invest $110 million in COVID-19 recovery funds in homelessness prevention and affordable housing.

The funds, approved contingently pending a forthcoming fiscal analysis, come from the federal government's American Rescue Plan, relief dollars meant to help localities recover from the economic fallout of the pandemic.

This is how the funds will be used:

  • Six to eight affordable housing communities that would serve some 1,000 residents. Half of those communities would be located west of I-35.
  • A 200-tiny home expansion of Camp Esperanza in Southeast Austin, along with other services.
  • A new housing community called Burleson Village on Burleson Road just minutes from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, which would serve around 700 residents.

Similarly, Austin City Council in June set aside $106.7 million through the American Rescue Plan for the homelessness crisis.

"If you're poor and you're in Austin, you're at the gates of hell," Commissioner Jeff Travillion said Tuesday. "We have to make sure that these dollars are an investment for poor people."


(Bob Daemmrich)

After months of speculation, a new report says political personality Beto O'Rourke is mulling a run for Texas governor that he will announce later this year.

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Jordi is an Austin-based rapper who represented Texas at the 2021 Red Bull Batalla. (Esparza)

Austin rapper Jordi Esparza may not have won the 2021 Red Bull Batalla, the world's largest Spanish freestyle rap competition, but for a spirited two rounds, the 22-year old Mexican native looked like he had every right to.

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